Electrochemical Power Supply and Water Cooling, In One Go

I was searching the IBM website to find info on their cooling system, Aquasar, in the hope to find a better way to learn about it rather than just looking at their hardware.

And indeed, I found something new and exciting. Seems that IBM researchers were not sitting idle lately. Of course you heard already they were going to cool computer chips by passing water through microscopic channels inside the chips.

But this time they went one step further and proposed to supply power to the chips using electrolyte that would pass through those microscopic channels, at the same time taking away generated heat. A very clever move.

More details are available in this presentation by Dr. Bruno Michel, Manager Advanced Thermal Packaging, IBM Zurich Research Laboratory.

Dr. Bruno Michel, IBM

Dr. Bruno Michel, IBM Zurich Research Laboratory. Copyright: IBM. Source: Flickr

The presentation also touches upon photovoltaic systems. According to the slides, their efficiency is less than 30%, and the remaining solar energy is wasted as heat. A scheme is proposed to use that heat to desalinate water. Many countries would really appreciate this.

UPD: IBM published their timeline of water-cooling achievements, starting from 1966.

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